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Pedestrian Safety at Crosswalks

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A while back I wrote to the city about Pedestrian Safety at crosswalks after repeatedly witnessing and being involved with near-miss pedestrian collisions. I tried to convince the city traffic engineer to implement a pedestrian-only window at all crosswalks downtown where people could safely cross without vehicle interference. Their compromise was to introduce a 4 second Leading Pedestrian Interval (LPI), but only at the intersection where I was nearly run over myself (at Washington & Rosalind Ave) and not all intersections that I advocated for. They claim LPI's have already been implemented downtown (few and far between from what I've seen), but IMO they should be implemented at ALL intersections or at the very least all major traffic intersections.

Earlier this year, an elderly woman who was a volunteer at the downtown library was killed  while crossing Central Blvd in the pedestrian crosswalk. I wrote to the Sentinel to ask them to try to put the screws to the City to ensure adequate remedial actions are taken, but to my knowledge nothing has been done there. At Central & Rosalind the power-struggle between pedestrians & vehicles to enter the crosswalk during the pedestrian signal is extremely dangerous. Same with Rosalind & Robinson, Robinson & Orange, Robinson & Summerlin, etc.

The City wants us to Live, Work and Play downtown, but they aren't doing much to ensure the safety of added pedestrians lured downtown by brand new apartment projects. With the construction of Modera,  Tremont and potentially Cambria Suites in the pipeline I think additional LPI's should be implemented before more pedestrians hit the streets. Better to be safe than sorry.

What's the point of this topic? Well, I was wondering if there was anyone on UP with City contacts, a large audience, petition experience or even a diplomatic personality who would be willing to spearhead LPI implementation at all (or at least major) intersections in the downtown/CBD area. I would try to do this myself, but I really don't have patience in dealing with people over common sense issues, especially when trying to "convince" the City about something that should already be widely implemented. There's just no excuse for this negligence, the cost to alter existing signals is nominal and the impact is significant (LPI's reduce pedestrian-vehicle collisions as much as 60% at treated intersections). Orlando is already known as one of the most dangerous cities for pedestrians.

LPI's really do work. The LPI at the Rosalind/Washington intersection now allows people to cross that intersection a little more safely especially in the dark at night (granted it's a measly 4 second head start to establish right of way in the crosswalk, but still).

If you're curious about how LPI's work, I found some videos that explain their usefulness:

 

 

 

 

 

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